BofA Securities Makes Huge 2021 Changes to US 1 List of Top Stocks to Buy

With the first quarter of 2021 underway, many of the top firms we follow on Wall Street are making some changes to the lists of their high-conviction stock picks for clients. With the market hitting all-time highs recently on all the major indexes, it makes sense to examine the lists as the rest of the year could have some additional volatility, as the political and geopolitical cycle could still prove to be very explosive components.

The fourth-quarter earnings ready to start pouring in this week, and the analysts at BofA Securities have made some big changes to the firm’s US 1 list of top stock recommendations. Five new stocks were added, and three that have performed admirably are being removed.

While all five of the new members are rated Buy at BofA Securities, it is important to remember that no single analyst report should be used as a sole basis for any buying or selling decision.

Applied Materials

This is one of the premier semiconductor capital equipment stocks and is a great tech addition for more aggressive investors. Applied Materials Inc. (NASDAQ: AMAT) provides manufacturing equipment, services and software to the semiconductor, display and related industries. It operates through three segments.

The Semiconductor Systems segment develops, manufactures and sells various manufacturing equipment that is used to fabricate semiconductor chips or integrated circuits. This segment also offers various technologies, including epitaxy, ion implantation, oxidation/nitridation, rapid thermal processing, physical vapor deposition, chemical vapor deposition, chemical mechanical planarization, electrochemical deposition, atomic layer deposition, etching and selective deposition and removal, as well as metrology and inspection tools.

The Applied Global Services segment provides integrated solutions to optimize equipment and fab performance and productivity comprising spares, upgrades, services, remanufactured earlier generation equipment and factory automation software for semiconductor, display and other products.

The Display and Adjacent Markets segment offers products for manufacturing liquid crystal displays, organic light-emitting diodes and other display technologies for TVs, monitors, laptops, personal computers, electronic tablets, smartphones and other consumer-oriented devices, as well as equipment for processing flexible substrates.

Investors receive just a 0.91% dividend. The BofA Securities price target for the shares is $115, while the Wall Street consensus is much lower at $92.56. Applied Materials stock closed trading on Monday at $97.96 a share, after almost a 3% gain on the day.

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